What is the Work? - March Eight, Nine, Ten
"What is the Work?" is an ongoing series, a daily log of studio time. What I worked on, how it went, how I felt, what I drank, what I listened to, what the weather was like. A way to mark passing days, to notice how it feels, to figure out what the work is. You can find the whole series under the tag "What is the Work?"
These days, I...
am making a hand-quilted tamarack jacket.
I did my quilt sandwiching for the jacket (where you make and baste the three layers of the quilt together) on Thursday night, listening to music. Since then, I've been slowly stitiching my way through the hand-quilting on each individual pattern piece. I originally was planning for the indigo polka-dot fabric to be the outside of the jacket, but now I'm thinking I may flip it around, showcase how beautiful the quilting looks on the pink linen I intended as the lining.
I'm hand-quilting with DMC Pearl Cotton Size 8, my personal favorite thread in the world. It's soft and silky and comes in every color imaginable. For this piece, I decided on very light purple thread with a few rows of canary yellow sometimes.
I'll be slow-stitching this for the next while. If I ever forget that hand-quilting is my favorite thing, please remind me. It is my favorite work, my favorite way to be quiet, my favorite way to think and wait. I'm quilting in an improvised scallop pattern, thinking about hills--the hills I'm returning to soon, lifting my eyes up to the hills where my help comes from, the way that where there are hills there are also valleys. If you need me, I'll be stitching hills, quietly, on my couch.
am drinking coffee from the Dominican Republic, brought back for us by a friend.
am feeling like everything is changing and the best way to deal with it is quiet stitching.
am reading a bunch of books from the library, including Miriam Toews' A Complicated Kindness. She is one of my favorite contemporary fiction authors, right up there, in my mind, with Lorrie Moore.